Flash: The Rain Never Stopped

The rain never stopped. Poseidon was a hell-hole planet, whose unique flora had thousands of pharmaceutical applications. All one had to do was tolerate the climate.

Depression and rotting skin were just a couple things mentioned by the recruiter; he wouldn’t get paid if the recruit cuts out before the year is out. Atesh signed up anyway because of the pay. Four months later, he was cursing his choice as he waited for the next group of recruits to arrive. Yes, his bank account was ten times fatter than it had ever been. But he would spend it all on a pair of dry socks.

After two months of harvesting, one can move into any other open position. Based on his skill set, or lack thereof, Atesh got Greeter. He welcomed new people, set up their rooms, and showed them the ropes. Only half his day was spent in the rain now; the rest of the time was in environmentally “controlled” facilities unable to keep up with the humidity. Hell, it rained in his room when the temperature dropped in the evening.

Three people shakily disembarked from the drop crate. Immediately the construction crew started moving it to the second cafeteria site. Two more crates, expected tomorrow, will provide enough material to seal the backup food area.

“Fucking wet slop.” The cultured voice was at odds with the surrounding environment, and the second-rate garments all new recruits were provided hung differently on the tall, young male.

Atesh suppressed his immediate interest in the new arrival. Rules said four days before newcomers could be integrated into the social activities, and it was his job to enforce the regulation. He smiled at the group and gestured to a small container half-buried under the vegetation which had grown since this morning’s pruning. All of them made haste to the stand-alone shelter, likely thinking being out of the rain would get them out of the wet too.

(words 323; first published 12/14/2020)